In this busy age of ‘not enough hours in the day’, technology has made it possible for many employees to work from the comfort of their own home. For many, working from home eliminates a long stressful commute while others value the convenience due to family commitments or disabilities.
Though more popular than it was five or ten years ago, working from home is still an elusive dream for many seeking to transition to this opportunity. There are several factors to take into consideration however when setting up shop to work out of your home. The most important question is whether or not you would be able do so successfully.
If are not self motivated or would have several distractions, then a work at home position might not be for you. Another factor to consider is the social aspect of going to work amongst co-workers versus the solitude of working alone all day.
If you’re interested in working from your own home office, here are three ways to accomplish your goal along with more food for thought as to whether or not this is truly something that would work for you.
Your Current Employer
Many companies are now pushing for a “paperless” environment – which means it’s easier to accomplish your responsibilities without actually being in an office. Remote login software, fax and of course email enable you to work from virtually anywhere in the world while still being able to connect to your company’s systems.
If you have already worked from home in your current position, chances are it can be done full time. Keep in mind you may have to physically visit your office from time to time.
Remember that snow storm in which everyone stayed home but the company asked a few people to work from their laptops? Were you able to work effectively? Had you been working on a desktop would you have had an easier time?
If you answer yes to any of those questions and have person circumstances that present a strong case for working at home, you can approach your employer about a trial period during which you will work from home for a designated period of time. If the trial goes well, work on making it permanent.
It’s suggested that you put a plan of action together. Be honest with yourself about your standing with your superior and the company. Do they value you? Is your performance in the office of a higher caliber? Employers make things happen and make exceptions for employees that produce and do a good job.
There are literally hundreds of websites designated to posting work at home vacancies. Even the mainstream job boards now provide advertisements for these opportunities. If you know exactly what you are looking for, you can easily narrow down your job search to find telecommute positions on the major jobsites.
For example, a search on indeed.com for Account Manager “telecommute” at the time of this writing will generate 215 results. Some of these companies require that you live in a particular city and/or state. You can further target your results by added your current or desired city and/or state.
The key to find these positions on the popular sites like Indeed, Monster or CareerBuilder is to use the right keywords in your search. Helpful keywords include; telecommute, remote, work at home, work from home and virtual. If you’re a skilled Bing or Google searcher, you can even use those search engines directly with the right keywords to find your dream work at home job.
The following five sites are completely devoted to connecting job seekers with remote career openings. The first two require membership fees. Search online for “Flexjobs coupon codes” and you can usually get a decent discount off your membership fee.
Start Your Own Business
Not everyone is interested in starting their own business but for those who are, this could be a very rewarding option. Running your own business from home does not necessarily have to be an online business but setting up a website does help to market your products and services. The key to a home business is a realistic plan.
Do you have a passion for the business?
Do you have experience in that industry or niche?
Are you in a position to start this business full time or can you start part time and scale it up to a full time operation?
Do you know your customers/ audience?
Can you market the business effectively?
Can you make enough money to replace your current income?
Do you have the resources (financial and otherwise) to make it a reality?
Can you run the business alone and if not, do you have the manpower?
Can you successfully establish the back-end of the business, i.e., accounting?
Do you have the patience and perseverance to see the business through until you start making a profit?
If a home business is your goal, start by putting a business plan together. Look around and see if a similar business already exists. Find out what’s working for them and decide how you want to establish your own operation.
A small business that can start part time and turn into a full time company is an easier transition but don’t rule out going full time once all your resources are in order.
The next step is up to you. If any of the three options above are appealing, put your plan together, dust off your resume or start jotting down your business ideas. Make it happen.